Make public contracts that saved Ghana GhC2.75bn – Anti-corruption watchers to Ofori-Atta

Ken Ofori-Atta, Ghana's Finance Minister
Ken Ofori-Atta, Ghana's Finance Minister

Ghana’s Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, has been petitioned to provide further details on the over GHC 2 billion reported to have been saved through sole sourced and restrictive tendering contracts.

The group including the Ghana Anti-Corruption Campaign Coalition and 20 partner organizations argues that their demand is in accordance with the provisions of Article 21(f) of the 1992 constitution—which stipulates the right to information.

Delivering the 2019 mid-year budget review in Parliament, Mr. Ofori-Atta announced that some GHC2.75 billion had been saved following thorough scrutiny of sole sourced contracts as well as contracts awarded through restrictive tendering.

Details on the said information are yet to be provided by the Minister.

The groups, however, say they want the full list of contracts from which the savings were made.

Sulemana Braimah, who is the Executive Secretary of the Media Foundation for West Africa, one of the petitioners says making the information public will be instructive to the public and provide guidance in future procurement applications.

“The biggest problem when it comes to corruption is in the area of public procurement and so if the government has consistently maintained that as a result of some prudent measures that were adopted, savings are being made to the tune of billions of cedis we think that it is important that the government makes the information open to the public so that we would all appreciate that the government is making towards ensuring value for money in procurement”, Braimah said in an interview with Accra-based Citi FM.

“If such information is put out, I guess all of us will learn from it and going forward be guided by what government is doing,” he added.

The Public Procurement Authority itself, in April 2019 announced that within the period April 2017 and December 2018, its outfit has saved the economy monies to the tune of GHC1.9 billion.

Saying that in 2016, under the administration of the former president John Dramani Mahama, the Procurement Authority made zero savings, as compared to 2017 and 2018.

Details to back the claims are yet to be made known to the public.

PPA’s review of contracts saved Ghana GHc2.75bn – Nana Addo

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo last week claimed his government had saved a total of GHc2.75 billion from review of sole-sourced procurement contracts.

While addressing lawyers at the Bar Conference in Takoradi, President Akufo-Addo said “in spite of the recent happenings at the PPA surrounding its suspended acting CEO, GH¢2.75 billion has been saved for the public exchequer from January 2017 to July 2019 as a result of the PPA reviewing contracts brought before it for approval either under sole-sourcing or restrictive tendering procedures.”

But the claim has been challenged by a number of people including the opposition National Democratic Congress.

General Secretary for the NDC, Johnson Asiedu Nketia addressing the media on the back of President Akufo-Addo’s speech trashed all claims made by the President.

“President Akufo-Addo claimed that he had saved the country about GHc2.75 billion through the rejection of sole-sourced contracts presented to the PPA. Didn’t he know that the PPA boss was actually the source of the sole-sourced contracts? We wish to submit this that, this claim is false and challenge the president to publish the full list of all the specific cases of savings,” he added.

By J. Ofori, Daily Mail GH

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